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Canada ratifies UPOV’91 treaty

June 22, 2015 - The government of Canada has ratified the UPOV'91 treaty to improve the plant variety protection system. This step finalizes one of the key measures of the recently-passed Agricultural Growth Act.

Canada's representative to the World Trade Organization deposited the instrument of ratification with the Secretary General of UPOV in Geneva, Switzerland on June 19. The 1991 Act of the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants, also known as UPOV '91, sets the international standard for plant breeders' rights.

In order to bring a new plant variety to the market, an immense amount of time and investment is required. Plant breeders often spend 10 to 12 years working to finalize a new plant variety. With the ratification of UPOV'91, plant breeders have more protection and farmers have better access to a wider variety of seeds.